Shopping Guide and GMO Update

On Friday, Nate asked if you’d be interested in a shopping guide that would help you easily navigate the grocery store, allow you to decode misleading labels, and identify truly healthy foods, not just ones pretending to be.

And the answer from you all is a resounding, “Yes!”

In fact, more of you responded to this inquiry than any other so far, so we know this is something you really want.

So don’t you worry, we are on it.

Bear with us, as it will take a little time to get this guide completed. Between how to avoid GMO foods, what foods you should always buy organic, how to read labels (cage-free, free-range, grass-fed: which ones really matter), the worst food additives to avoid, how you can actually save money by eating local and organic, and MUCH more content, we want this guide to be the only thing you will ever need to survive the supermarket.

So stay tuned and we will be sure to keep you updated on the progress of the guide.

But until then, we will be sure to keep you updated here in Living Well Daily on all GMO-related news. Which brings us to today’s update, if you haven’t heard already: The U.S. House of Representatives recently passed H.R. 1599, a bill that would nullify state GMO labeling laws and do a bunch of other not-so-great things in regards to GMO labelling.

One reader, Ted C., wrote in with such a great summary of the problems with this bill that I’m going to let him describe it for me:

“H.R. 1599 would also block any attempt by both state and local governments to regulate in any way GMO crop production (e.g., they could not restrict in any way the spraying of herbicides and pesticides on GMO crops located near significantly populated areas)…

“H.R. 1599 would permit food companies to label any GMO food products as ‘natural,’ and this bill also would create a federal certification process for voluntary non-GMO labels.” [My emphasis added.]

To me, this is the biggest problem with the bill. As I told Chris Campbell, the editor of Spy Briefing Today:

“As it stands, in order for a product to label itself as non-GMO, it would have to submit an application to the government showing proof of a ‘supply chain process control plan.’

“They’d have to have records of seed verification; ensure growing, harvesting, and processing segregation of the plant; maintain records of following the plan; and have a corrective action procedure in the event the established plan is deviated from. And that plan would have to be reviewed and approved by the government.

“How many small companies can afford to do that? Not to mention the inevitable delays it would cause.”

Here at Spy Briefing’s Living Well, providing you with GMO-free products is our top priority. But if this bill becomes law, it could make finding GMO-free ingredients a VERY hard thing to do if companies can’t afford to go through the federal certification process.

And even though we test our products and verify there is no genetically modified material within them, without the federal certification, we still could not label our products as non-GMO.

And THAT is a big problem. Whether you think GMO products should be labelled or not, regulating non-GMO product labelling is only going to create more regulatory headaches for the companies trying to do right and listen to what consumers really want.

The bill is headed to the Senate. You can cross your fingers and hope that the Senate hasn’t been fully bought and paid for by Big Ag and Monsanto or you can take action and at least know you didn’t sit on the sidelines and allow this bill to get passed without at least voicing your opinion.

If you are so inclined, you can give your senator a piece of your mind about this bill here, through the Environmental Working Group’s site. They have a handy pre-worded email you can use, or insert your own thoughtful words. EWG makes it very easy.

Until next time,

Jasmine LeMaster

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